Where Local and Global Appetites Collide

Whole Foods Market Peanut Recall

In a nutshell: Grind your own and bulk peanut butter at Whole Foods Market in Southern Calif., Arizona, Las Vegas, and Hawaii are being recalled because of the peanut salmonella debacle.

FDA press release (verbatim) and blogger comments at the bottom:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE — Los Angeles — February 13, 2009 — Whole Foods Market is voluntarily recalling all code dates of the following self-serve and bulk items because they may contain peanuts that have the potential to be contaminated with salmonella.

This action was taken as a result of the recently expanded recall by Peanut Corporation of America (PCA) to include all peanut ingredients produced in their Blakely, Georgia facility, in turn affecting Whole Foods Market’s supplier for bulk peanuts. None of the recalled Whole Foods Market products have been directly linked to the salmonella outbreak, and there have been no illnesses reported.

Salmonella is an organism which can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Healthy persons infected with Salmonella often experience fever, diarrhea (which may be bloody), nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. In rare circumstances, infection with Salmonella can result in the organism getting into the bloodstream and producing more severe illnesses such as arterial infections (i.e., infected aneurysms), endocarditis and arthritis.

Affected products are listed below. For pre-packaged products, consumers can look for the PLU numbers provided on the product’s UPC label. For self-serve products, any purchase prior to February 1, 2009 should be considered affected. Any customers who have any of these items at home are encouraged to dispose of these items or return them to one of our stores for a full refund.

Self-serve Grinder Peanut Butter – PLU # 7121 (sold through a consumer-operated peanut grinder)
Self-serve Grinder Honey Roasted Peanut Butter – PLU # 8579 (sold through a consumer-operated peanut grinder)
Self-serve Grinder Chocolate Peanut Butter – PLU # 8946 (sold through a consumer-operated peanut grinder)
Bulk Fresh Peanut Butter – PLU # 7121 (pre-packaged)
Bulk Fresh Honey Roasted Peanut Butter – PLU # 8579 (pre-packaged)
Bulk Fresh Chocolate Peanut Butter – PLU # 8946 (pre-packaged)

The recalled products (linked to Lot numbers 7, 8 and 9) were sold prior to February 1, 2009 in Whole Foods Market stores in Southern California, Las Vegas, Arizona and Hawaii. These products were unavailable for purchase between February 1 and February 9, 2009. Starting February 10, these same items were available for purchase featuring nuts from lot numbers not affected by the current nationwide recalls.

—————————–As a consumer I wonder why some place as well known and respected as Whole Foods Market is — how does their buyers find sourcers like the Peanut Company from Hell and do the buyers or representatives ever check the places where these products are made?

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